Sometimes desserts should be eaten first!
When it comes to summertime desserts, it’s important to highlight the best of the season. Right now the bright, sweet, and refreshing strawberries are in season. Strawberries are an excellent choice for this elegant, summertime dessert.
This addicting tart has a buttery, nutty crust made with almonds and layered with a light, and smooth cream cheese, sweet juicy strawberries, and topped with a crisp crumb topping with a hint of ginger. A perfect combination!
Customize this tart with any fruit combo: blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, or a combination of berries.
This recipe requires some planning ahead, as the tart crust needs to be made and baked in advance. Which makes it the perfect, virtually no bake time, hot summertime dessert.
So, how about skipping straight to dessert?
Meet ya in the kitchen
Cookie Dough Tart Crust:
2 tablespoons slivered almonds
6 tablespoons confectioners sugar
1 1/4 cup flour
Pinch of salt
1 egg yolk
1 stick butter, cold, but into small cubes
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Almond Crumb Topping:
1 1/4 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 cup almonds, coarsely chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
1 teaspoon powdered ginger
1/8 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons butter, melted
Strawberry Cream Cheese Filling:
1 pound cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 pound strawberries, rinsed, hulled and halved or quartered
1 10-inch tart pan
Making the Crust:
Combine the almonds and powdered sugar in a bowl to a food processor and pulse repeatedly until finely ground about 1 minute. Add the flour and salt and pulse again to mix. Add the butter and pulse until no visible pieces of butter remain. Add the yolk and vanilla and continue to pulse until it forms a ball. Turn the dough out onto a floured surface, shape into a thick disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and allow to soften about 10 minutes. Unwrap it and place it on a floured surface. Gently roll the dough into a 13-inch disk, dusting flour as needed. Transfer it to a 10-inch tart pan, making sure it’s flat against both the bottom and sides of the pan. Trim away any excess dough at the rim of the pan by rolling over with a rolling pin or trim edges with a sharp knife. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer until firm, about 30 minutes. Now you can start making the crumb topping.
Make the Crumb Topping:
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, fresh ginger, powdered ginger, and salt. Stir in the chopped almonds. Mix with your fingertips to blend before adding the butter. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the butter until all of the dry ingredients are evenly moistened. Let stand for 5 minutes, then using your fingertips, break the mixture into 1/4 to 1/2-inch crumbs. Refrigerate until needed
To Bake the Crust and Crumbs:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange the racks in the upper and lower third of the oven. Prepare the crust for baking by pressing parchment paper or aluminum foil tightly against the crust, covering the edges to prevent them from burning. Fill with pie weights/dried beans or uncooked rice. Make sure they’re fully distributed over the entire surface. For the crumbs have ready a baking sheet with parchment paper. Scatter the crumbs on the baking sheet to bake along with the crust.
Bake the tart crust in the lower third of the oven and the crumb topping in the upper third. After 10 minutes, remove the paper and the weights (pie weights, beans, rice), from the tart shell and place it on the upper rack and the crumbs on the lower one.
Continue baking the tart shell until it is dry and lightly golden, 15 to 20 additional minutes. Bake the crumb topping until it is deep golden and firm, 10 to 15 additional minutes.
Cool the crust and the crumb topping on racks. If the crumbs have clumped together during the baking, let them cool completely and then use a knife to chop them coarsely.
Make the Cream Cheese Filling:
Place the cream cheese in a bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium speed just until it is smooth. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar, lemon zest, and vanilla and continue beating until lightened, about 1 minute.
To Assemble the Tart:
Spread half of the cream cheese filling on the bottom of the baked tart shell and arrange the strawberries on it cut side down. Spread the remaining filling over the berries. Evenly scatter the crumb topping with sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar.
Unmold the tart and slide it off the pan base to a platter. Serve cut in wedges.
Can be made ahead and assembled a few hours before you intend to serve. Keep it at a cool room temperature until you do.
Recipe adapted from Bake! by Nick Malgieri
Thanks for stopping by.
Bake some love!